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Thread: Stealing trash?

  1. #1
    mailman16 is offline Member
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    Stealing trash?

    What is the name of your state? IN
    Not sure where to put this, so I'll try here first. I know that once garbage is placed at the curb it becomes public property and anyone can take it without legal repercussions, but does the same law apply to items thrown in a dumpster behind a hardware store? I read about this situation on another site and I'm interested in what the law actually states. Thanks for humoring me!
  2. #2
    hmmbrdzz Guest

    Re: Stealing trash?

    Originally posted by mailman16
    What is the name of your state? IN
    Not sure where to put this, so I'll try here first. I know that once garbage is placed at the curb it becomes public property and anyone can take it without legal repercussions, but does the same law apply to items thrown in a dumpster behind a hardware store? I read about this situation on another site and I'm interested in what the law actually states. Thanks for humoring me!

    My response: That's a good one. I can't wait to see the legal answer. I'll humor you back with my philosophy: "another man's garbage is another man's treasure". ? ?


    hmmbrdzz
  3. #3
    stephenk is offline Senior Member
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    you may need to check state statutes and local city or county ordinances.
  4. #4
    FarmerJ is offline Senior Member
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    Mail in some citys it might be called illegal scavaging .
  5. #5
    Son of Slam is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Stealing trash?

    Originally posted by mailman16
    What is the name of your state? IN
    Not sure where to put this, so I'll try here first. I know that once garbage is placed at the curb it becomes public property and anyone can take it without legal repercussions, but does the same law apply to items thrown in a dumpster behind a hardware store? I read about this situation on another site and I'm interested in what the law actually states. Thanks for humoring me!
    I don't know where garbage is public property at the curb, but in a lot of places it is not, for many reasons. People have a right to privacy and not to have someone going through there trash and on there property. Recyclable trash is someplaces the property of the city or a recycler when it is set out. It may be trespassing to go through a dumpster behind a store.
  6. #6
    amc822 Guest
    United States v. Hall, UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE ELEVENTH CIRCUIT, 47 F.3d 1091; 1995
    OVERVIEW: A warrantless search of a garbage dumpster on commercial property was proper because defendant failed to take affirmative steps to restrict public access to his company's discarded garbage, which diminished his reasonable expectation of privacy.
  7. #7
    Bravo8 is offline Member
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    Slam-

    Garbage placed at the curb is abandoned property, and the previous owner has no expectation of privacy.

    There is specific case law regarding garbage at the curb, but can't recall the cite right now. If you need it, I'll have to do some looking.

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